New Delhi: Union Parfliamentary Affairs and Urban Development Minister M Venkaiah Naidu on Tuesday said the views expressed by various individuals on chanting "Bharat Mata Ki Jai" are not authorised by the government, and added he doesn't agree with it himself.
Asked about the statements that came from Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, yoga guru Ramdev, and Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh leader Bhaiyaji Joshi, Naidu said he is "not in agreement" with them.
"Has the government issued any circular?" he asked.
Joshi had said those who consider this land as their mother should say "Bharat Mata ki Jai".
Fadnavis said people not saying "Bharat Mata ki Jai" should leave India, while Ramdev said he would have "beheaded" those who refuse to chant "Bharat Mata ki Jai" were it not for the law of the land.
Naidu stressed that raising the slogan should be taken positively, and said, "Bhagat Singh said 'Bharat Mata Ki Jai' at the gallows".
He, however, clarified it was not mandatory, and the government was not of the view that every one should chant that slogan.
"In a democracy, people will say so many things. At the end, what the government decides is binding on all," Naidu told reporters at an interaction at the Indian Women Press Corps.
"Their views are not authorised by government," he said.
Asked about Fadnavis' statement in particular, the union minister said: "Did the chief minister pass any legislation on it?"
The debate on raising the "Bharat Mata Ki Jai" slogan has taken the centre stage following pro- and anti- comments from several quarters.
Opposition parties have criticised the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party and its ideological mentor Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh over the statements.
Influential Islamic seminary Darul Uloom Deoband recently issued a fatwa that it was not proper for Muslims to chant "Bharat Mata ki Jai".